Preventing Identity Theft
No one is immune from identity theft, but if you're proactive in protecting your information, you reduce the risk of becoming a victim. There are many steps you can take to protect yourself from fraud.
- Review your credit report once a year from the three major credit reporting bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Visit annualcreditreport.com for a free copy of your report. You can request this free copy once every 12 months.
- Guard your personal information. Don't give out your Social Security number unless absolutely necessary, and never respond to unsolicited requests for your information online or by phone or mail.
- Pay attention to your billing cycles and check your statements. If a bill is late, contact the sender right away. Review your credit card and bank account statements for unauthorized transactions. Contact your financial institution right away if you don't recognize a charge.
- Protect your mail. Always collect your mail promptly, and place a hold on your mail when you're on vacation. Elect to receive secure online statements in lieu of physical mail when possible.
- Dispose of sensitive documents carefully. Never simply throw away statements, pay stubs or letters that include your personal information. Use a cross-cut shredder or take advantage of the low-cost shred services at your local Staples, FedEx Office or UPS Store.
- Create complex passwords that cannot be easily guessed, and change them regularly.
- Only carry what you need. Don't keep your Social Security card in your wallet, and only bring the credit cards you regularly use.
- Avoid a false sense of security. Always keep an eye on your possessions and store important documents in a secure place.
Reporting Suspected Fraud
Report suspected fraud to Delta Community right away. If your card is lost or stolen, or if you see a transaction on your account that you did not authorize, contact us immediately at 800-544-3328.
Recovering From Identity Theft
If someone has used your information to make purchases, open new accounts or drain your finances, report it and get help. The Federal Trade Commission explains what steps to take if you believe you are a victim of identity theft.